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Raise standards for letters

Opinion may be important, but in considering letters for publication The Spokesman-Review editors must set a reasonable standard for acceptance or the letters section will lose credibility.

Recently, there has been a noticeable trend toward publishing assertions in this section for which supporting evidence is incomplete, or not provided at all.

For example, one contribution on June 22 was labeled “Michelle not a Christian.” In it, the contributor stated that in a speech to Oregon State University graduates at Corvallis, Ore., Michelle Obama said that graduates need to live life for themselves, not for anyone else, and concluded that she is not a Christian.

But in a letter on June 29, Karen Gertson provided a much more complete context of Michelle Obama’s comments and came to the opposite conclusion.

On June 23, one contributor, Alfred P. Jones, headlined his letter with “Obama hypocrisy a threat” with no hard evidence to back assertions of hypocrisy. His letter was further flawed in that his closing sentence was composed of two parts that were not even grammatically linked.

Editors, please review the contributions proposed in the future and expect a higher standard. Otherwise the letters section will degenerate into a Twitter-like part of the newspaper.

Bruce McFadden



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